Need a little extra cash to handle seasonal spending? If you’ve got some time, holiday hustles for service providers can pay you a nice hourly wage and they’re easy to schedule around your day job.
Holiday hustles for service providers
These hustles range from baby and dog-sitting to working at holiday events and wrapping gifts. To be sure, dog and babysitters are always in demand. But demand soars during the holiday party season. And, just as restaurants charge premium prices on high-demand days, like New Years Eve, you can too.
People visiting distant family members during the holidays need dog-sitters, often for extended periods. And, even those who aren’t going across the country often seek check-in visits and walks for their pets, while they’re off at day-long holiday parties, meals and meet-ups.
Dog-sitting giant Rover, gives freelancers the ability to easily market their dog-walking; pet-sitting; boarding; and other pet-related services on the site. And the site offers a simple way to set holiday rates. You can also provide additional services, like grooming and pet pick-ups.
Freelancers set their own rates and terms here. The terms include what kind of animals you’re willing to care for, when you’re available, and whether you’ll sit or walk multiple animals at a time.
Freelancers say they can easily make $1,000 a month with this site, even in non-holiday periods. However, the demand is particularly strong during the summer and winter holidays.
Naturally, parents are going to take the kids to Grandma’s house. But they probably are not invited to the office Christmas party or to the New Year’s Eve celebration. And finding a sitter at this time of year can be tricky because babysitters have lives too.
Care is the top site for finding a regular sitter, with 9.5 million members, including more than 5 million client families looking for help. Freelancers here set their own rates, usually between $25 and $35 per hour. (Notably, the site is also the top spot to find caregivers for elderly clients, with freelance caregivers offering to help with everything from shopping to live-in assistance with activities of daily living.)
Care charges both sitters and clients a membership fee. However, the fees are relatively modest and cover a background check, which is advisable for anyone watching your loved ones. For those providing regular sitting services, this fee amounts to just pennies a day.
That said, Care’s fees are stiff for anyone who only needs an occasional babysitter. (The site charges $9 a month to sitters and $39 a month to families.) Bambino is better suited for those who just want to cover a date night or two.
Bambino works hand in hand with Facebook to provide personal references for sitters, who can be as young as 13. Sitters determine how much they charge, but are encouraged to base their rates on age and experience. Younger sitters charge as little as $10 an hour, while older sitters with CPR training can command considerably more.
The site takes nothing out of sitter pay, but charges parents a $5 fee each time they book a sitter through the site.
Company Christmas parties and New Year’s celebrations also ramp up the demand for workers able to bartend, serve, take tickets and provide other consumer-facing help at events.
Several sites connect workers capable of providing these services with companies needing the extra help. These sites include Qwick, Wonolo, BlueCrew and Jitjatjo. All four sites shoot potential workers notifications when there’s an available job that matches their skills and provide details about the location, pay and other requirements.
There’s no charge to workers to use these sites. All four charge employers for the matching service.
Lights, wrapping, cleaning, holiday fix-its
There are two sites where you can advertise your ability to help people with everything from hanging holiday lights and wrapping gifts to providing personal shopping or organization services. Both are free for freelancers to use.
TaskRabbit is a national freelance site that allows freelancers to set up a profile that explains what they do, from running errands to plumbing, electrical work to cleaning. Freelancers set their own rates, based on their experience and the service they’re providing. So a single freelancer might charge $20 an hour for wrapping gifts, $25 an hour for running errands, but $50 an hour for assembling furniture. The site tacks an extra charge onto client bills to pay for the matchmaking service.
Nextdoor is technically a social media site, but it has become a great referral source for local services. Posts offering to provide handy-man services, shopping, cleaning, gift-wrapping, tutoring and the like, often get dozens of responses. Neighbors also often post when they’re seeking a service — help with moving, lawn-care, etc. If you want to offer a seasonal service, like gift wrapping, personal shopping, or holiday deep cleaning, this can be a highly effective and free place to advertise.